For all the fun (and not so fun) trends we’ve seen take over the gaming industry over the decades, one thing has remained a constant: there will always be hard games out there. In the 80s and 90s, it was getting to the end of Dig Dug, Galaga, or Ghosts ‘n Goblins that had us pulling our hair out and slamming our fists onto arcade machines. In the early 2000s until today, we had “prettier” versions hit the shelves, but in the case of Dark Souls, Ninja Gaiden II, God Hand and dozens of others, this experience didn’t change a bit. Sure, you could argue that games are a whole lot easier today than they used to be, and for the most part, that’s actually true. But every year, we still see tons of releases that have gamers “raging” out. Still, as much as it may frustrate us, we still love playing hard games online because of that triumphant feeling when you finally beat the last boss and/or level.
It’s pretty difficult to pigeonhole hard games into a single genre, since there have been games in virtually every genre that have stumped gamers across the world. As the industry has grown over the decades, we’ve seen really hard maze games, escape games, freecell games, and puzzle games, among others. Certain fighting game franchises, especially the Dark Souls era and the large number of “souls-like” games that followed, make it very difficult to survive for long because of super precise and unforgiving combat mechanics. Speaking of, there are basically two ways for a game to be really difficult: physically (coordination, timing, etc.) and mentally (riddles, finding the right strategy, etc.) That’s the easiest way to break this genre into categories, so let’s take a look.
Some of the hardest games ever actually have nothing to do with bombs, bullets, knives, or weapons of any other kind. Sometimes, all you need is a single question or an incomplete equation to stop a gamer dead in their tracks, and that’s exactly what some of these hard puzzle and riddle games do so well. Of course, when they’re so incredibly hard that you can’t beat them after a hundred tries, then they’re unbalanced. We’ve sought out trivia, maze, riddle, and matching games that, while hard, are still beatable if you really knuckle down and come at it from different angles. Most importantly, just don’t give up! Take a brain break if you get frustrated and then figure out that maze, riddle, or other puzzle when you’re ready.
Finally, there’s something so rewarding about perfectly timed jumps, grueling combat, banking around tight corners, and other exhibitions of skill that makes super hard games addicting. This is the physical side of hard games that we love, and it requires a different kind of talent than the brain teasers mentioned above. You may not have to explore the deepest nooks and crannies of your mind to get through these tests, but you will need super quick hands, a keen eye, and lots of patience. If this is your type of game, then check out our skill games category to show us what you can do. Physical or mental, however you like to flex your abilities, these hard games are the place to do it!